Gordon Lets Jackson School Bill Become Law Without His Signature

Mar 15, 2019

Steve Friess of the Jackson Hole Classical Academy speaks before a legislative committee.
Credit Bob Beck / Wyoming Public Radio

Gov. Mark Gordon said a bill that takes away a county's ability to apply zoning regulations to private schools can become law without his signature.

The governor said the bill is flawed and he wants lawmakers and county officials to work together to come up with a better solution.

"Well, I think it's a very bad precedent and very bad form that you just go to the legislature to nuclear option things that you don't like out," said Gordon.

But the governor also complemented legislators for their serious consideration of the bill and noted that he thought the issue presented strong issues on both sides. Still, he vows to work with state and local officials to find a better solution.

"And at the end of the whole equation what I'm recommending is that the legislature, county commissioners and for that matter municipalities take a look at if there is a way we can resolve these issues at a lower level and not going to the legislature," said Gordon.

The law will take away a county's ability to apply land use regulations to a private school as long as the private school follows the same building standards as a public school. It will allow the Jackson Hole Classical Academy to move forward and build its new campus south of Jackson. Many think local officials will challenge the constitutionality of the law in court.